The NDA’s Sankalp Rally at Gandhi Maidan in Patna on March 3 was marked not just by thin crowds but also rumours of strained relations between Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Union minister Giriraj Singh. The latter was conspicuous by his absence at the rally, and the buzz was that Kumar was opposed to his presence due to his inflammatory statements. But it turned out that Singh was unwell. The rally itself seemed to have affected the party in terms of perception. Apart from criticism that it had failed to organise a good crowd, BJP leaders admitted that the crowd did not reflect the party’s strength. Its ally JD(U) worked more effectively as there were more flags of that party than those of the BJP, and the national leaders blamed the local leadership for it.
Hacked And Trolled
The trolling of the BJP on social media was for a different reason on Tuesday. The official website of the ruling party was hacked, and was down for more than half the day. Social media was abuzz with reports and screenshots of memes featuring Prime Minister Narendra Modi. One poked fun at a video clip of German Chancellor Angela Merkel walking past Modi as he extended his hand. Some screenshots showed abusive messages posted on website saying “I’ve fooled all of you” and “more to come”. Others showed a video with a song from ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’. BJP’s social media head Amit Malviya, otherwise prolific on his Twitter handle, did not post any tweet on the hacking.
Back In Action
The Congress has decided to resume full-fledged political activities, which were put on hold after the Pulwama terror attack and Balakot airstrike. Congress president Rahul Gandhi will have a luncheon meeting with ambassadors and high commissioners from the diplomatic missions of immediate neighbouring countries and G-20 nations on Wednesday. The Pakistan high commissioner is not invited. The interaction was scheduled for February 15, but was cancelled after the Pulwama attack. The Congress Working Committee too will meet on March 12 in Ahmedabad.